Home Buying in Silver Lake>Question Details

Carla, Home Buyer in Los Angeles, CA

are the refrigerator, washer and dryer considered appliances that stay with the home after it has been sold?

Asked by Carla, Los Angeles, CA Sat Aug 2, 2008

I purchased a multi-unit building in Los Angeles and agreed to allow the former owner to stay in one of the units for one year. After the term expired, he simply refused to leave. It has now been three years and he is finally leaving the rental unit, but is trying to take the refrigerator, washer, dryer and overhead lighting with him. The other two units also had the same appliances and those have remained with the building. THis was not specified in the sale agreement. Is there a rule or standard practice for this in Los Angeles?

Help the community by answering this question:


Voices Member’s answer
The question to you would be, "why did you let this person stay in the building for 3 years?" You should have evicted them LOOOOOOOONG time ago. As far as the appliances, its complicated. If it was a regular renter, and everything in the unit was there before they moved in, then they can't take it. But now you have a situation where the OWNER of the building lived in the unit, so everything that was there, belonged to him at one point. Seems to me you need a good real estate attorney. If you need help finding one, contact me through my profile and i'll be happy to help you.

Thanks and good luck...
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 13, 2010
Speak to an attorney. Refrigerator, washer and dryers are generally considered to be personal property. However the sale was three years ago and I think it could easily be argued they now belong to you as the owner of the property and not the your tenant. Certainly you would not permit a tenant to tkae these out of the other two units.
Light fixtures are fixtures and should never be removed. Personally you should have had them evicted the moment the lease expired, it's clear that your dealing with a jerk.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 14, 2014
All Appliances are negotiable, they should always be put in the Offer to clairify.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 14, 2014
When purchasing a home you should always ask the selling agent what is staying. I always write everything you want to stay.. like w/d .. refrig... even mounted tvs..in your offer. If it is bolted it has to stay. Also make sure you take notes of the appliances if you ask for them. I have had sellers swap them out before the closing with older ones or ones they had in the garage. Never assume it goes with the house. WRITE EVERYTHING IN THE CONTRACT..Just to be safe....I have had to buy my clients a few of these items over the years because I didnt write things in the offer..
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 14, 2014
Hi Carla,

Appliances are considered personal property, if it was not specifically written in the contract to be included in the sale, then the seller can remove it. Anything that is a fixture to the property stays.

Hope that clarifies it for you. All the best and good luck.

Dawn Welch
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 5, 2009
Hi Carla,

These items are generally considered personal property, unless they were specifically written into your contract to be included in the sales price. Absent of that inclusion statement, these items remain personal property.

Yona Bello
Web Reference: http://www.YonaBello.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 6, 2008
These are considered personal items and not included unless something in writing stating included.
Web Reference: http://www.centuryside.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Aug 3, 2008

Typically, these items stay with the home upon closing of the sale unless other wise specified in the contract.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Aug 3, 2008
Hi Carla,
I agree with Ray.. those items should have been written in your contract explictly because anything movable can be taken out by the sellers including plants and some will even take , light fixtures. See if you can work something out with him. Good Luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Aug 3, 2008
The way that a judge is going to look at a situation like this is to use a test called MARIA. This is what it means:
M – Method of attachment. Will the removal of the item destroy or severely damage the structure? How is it attached to the building or land?
A – Adaptability. Was the item made for this particular use and customized o fit in the current place? An entertainment center that is custom made to fit in a unique wall space that could not easily be adapted for another wall or home.
R – Relationship. Is it a tenant/landlord relationship? A tenant who put in a ceiling fan would not be expected to leave the fan, but rather put the old fixture back.
I – Intent. What was the intent when the item was placed in service?
A – Agreement. What was n the written agreement? This trumps all.

The answers you have received stating that certain things are customary in a particular area would normally suffice, however, if you have a problem situation it is usually not adequate to assume anything. That is why you need to spell everything out. You should review your contract and speak to your Realtor and attorney.

The MARIA test is a good guide for the future, but in this case I would look to the agreement first and then work your way up the list to help establish who gets what. Feel free to contact me if you need a referral for an attorney.

Good Luck,

Web Reference: http://www.charityar.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Aug 2, 2008
Hello Carla. The appliances are generally personal property that the seller can take with them. The overhead lighting you refer to is not considered personal property if it is attached to a wall or ceiling, which I assume it is, and is considered part of the real property. The exception is if the overhead lightling is listed as an exclusion in the Residential Income Propertly Purchase Agreement under paragraph 13. Check your contract and you may want to consult with your realtor and possibly an attorney. Best of luck with this difficult situation.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Aug 2, 2008
Generally, appliances are considered personal property and unless stated in the purchase agreement they belong to the tenant. Items that are attached stay with the unit i.e. curtain rods, overhead light fixtures, sconces, shower heads etc.

Did you recieve an estopple certificate for all of the units including that of the previous owner? This is the instrument used to verify the rent, security deposit, rent consessions and personal property that belong to the tennat.

Escrow would need this information to prorate the rent as of the date of closing and to transter the security deposit from the seller's account to yours.This is the normal business practice for multi-unit buildings.

Hope this helps.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Aug 2, 2008
Well, not necessarily but recently that has been the trend. It is possible that your tenant purchased those appliances. In that case they are his personal property and he should be allowed to take them.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Aug 2, 2008
During the past three years have you contacted a lawyer?
In terms of the sale what appliances convey with the units are stipulated (nornally)
Any thing attached to the unit is considered to convey with it:L
Drapes, a range, toilets, sinks, light fixtures.

Refrigerator, Washer, and dryer...they should be stipulated. You should discuss this with your agent. If the dryer is attached to a gas line, you might have a case. The refrigerator normally is not part of the sale, (meaning that the owner takes it), same with the washer and dryer.

but the bottom line is what is in the contract.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Aug 2, 2008
Keith Sorem, Real Estate Pro in Glendale, CA
Call my friend Igor - he's in LA, he can tell you the standard practice locally. My opinion, based on general RE practices - lighting is yours, washer/dryer are not, refrigerator varies locally - in the East, it stays, in the mid west it does not, and I have no idea about LA.

Igor Korosec
Office: 310-499-1305 Fax: 866-372-2352
Web: http://www.BestHollywoodHomes.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Aug 2, 2008
DISCLAIMER: Not seeing the contract my comment is based on "general rule"

Overhead lighting cant remove it is attached to the property. In most sales the kitchen appliances dishwasher, stove convey with the property. Ref., washer & dryer are considered to be personal property they are not attached usually taken by the seller.

Contact your realtor who assisted you in purchasing the property.
http://www.lynn911.com http://www.homes-for-sale-dallas.com
Web Reference: http://www.lynn911.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sat Aug 2, 2008
Search Advice
Ask our community a question
Email me when…

Learn more

Copyright © 2015 Trulia, Inc. All rights reserved.   |  
Have a question? Visit our Help Center to find the answer